Wednesday, March 12, 2008

TOPIC: Syphilis Skyrockets in U.S. -- STDs Raging in Gay/Bisexual Men
Article by Daniel J. DeNoon
A raging epidemic of sexually transmitted diseases in gay/bisexual men drove U.S. syphilis rates up 12% in 2007 -- the seventh consecutive year of syphilis increases. Meanwhile, a CDC study found that tests for another common STD -- gonorrhea -- miss one in three infections among men who have sex with men. Those findings alone are troubling enough. But the picture becomes bleaker against the background of a surging HIV epidemic. "This increase in syphilis represents a major concern for the health of gay and bisexual men," Kevin Fenton, MD, director of the CDC's HIV/AIDS center, said at a news conference. "STDs increase HIV transmission. And if a person is already HIV infected, syphilis can increase viral load [a measure of HIV activity in the body]." Fenton announced the new STD data at this week's National STD Prevention Conference in Chicago.

Syphilis Surges Again
The syphilis numbers are shocking because just a decade ago, the U.S. was on the verge of eliminating the disease. Now 3.7 out of every 100,000 Americans -- and 6.4 out of every 100,000 American males -- carry the infection, which can cause blindness, brain damage, and death if untreated. Rates among men are six times higher than rates among women. This, Fenton said, is largely because of huge increases in syphilis infections among men who have sex with men. About 60% of all recent U.S. syphilis infections occurred in these men. African-Americans continue to be disproportionately affected by syphilis. Syphilis rates are six times higher for African-American men than among white men, and 13 times higher for African-American women than for white women.

Read the entire article here...

EDITORIAL: What keeps coming to mind as I read these articles is that proverb: "Whatever a man sows, that he will reap." Many Americans have sewn sexual immorality and cheered for homosexuality for the past 30 years. Now, our society is reaping what we have sewn. One in four teenage girls has an STD. Syphilis is running rampant among homosexual men. HIV/AIDS is an ever rising tide among those men (and women) who choose to engage in risky behaviors such as homosexual sex, IV drug use and multiple sex partners. Our former President taught kids that oral sex isn't really sex. Madison Avenue offers sex in almost every advertisement -- from shoes to automobiles to restaurants. In the mall, Abercrombie & Fitch coaches young teen boys on how to seduce young teen girls, while the Body Shop shows tweens how to dress like prosti-tots.
Yes, we are reaping what we have sewn. It's hard to feel sorry for those who are infected. The risks are widely documented. The church has been at the forefront (although always maligned) of promoting abstinence and fidelity. Our culture is in a sexual disease ridden state -- and we can ONLY look in the mirror to find who should be blamed.

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